Covid-19: Record 18,000 daily virus toll worldwide; more than 100 million cases recorded; global death toll at 2.16 million


PARIS/HONG KONG, Jan 27 (AFP): More than 18,000 people worldwide died of coronavirus over the past 24 hours, according to an AFP count based on official figures, a new grim record amid the battle to stem the pandemic.

A total of 18,109 Covid-19 deaths were registered on Tuesday.

Over the week from January 20-26, a total of 101,366 coronavirus deaths were registered worldwide, an average of 14,00 fatalities each day and the worst week on record since the virus first emerged in China in late 2019.

In recent months the daily death rate has been increasing.

By the end of November, the world had passed the milestone of 10,000 daily coronavirus deaths.

This rose to 11,000 by mid-December, 12,000 on January 8 and up to 13,000 three days later.

Five countries accounted for the 101,000 deaths recorded last week.

Topping the list is the United States with 23,675 deaths over the week, bringing its toll total to 425,227.

Mexico, Britain, Brazil and Germany complete the list.

The global death toll reached 2.16 million overnight Tuesday from 100 million cases recorded since the start of the pandemic.

For the record, more than 100 million Covid-19 cases have now been recorded worldwide, according to an AFP tally on Wednesday (Jan 27) as newly-inaugurated President Joe Biden pledged to ramp up the United States's struggling vaccine programme.

The number of cases, compiled from data provided by national health agencies, represents just a fraction of the real infections as the coronavirus has spread around the globe.

The United States, which passed 25 million confirmed cases last weekend, remains the country with the largest outbreak -- and the largest death toll of over 420,000.

Biden is seeking to turn around the fight against the virus, which took a ferocious grip on the country during Donald Trump's presidency when the risks were downplayed and officials gave mixed messages on mask-wearing other safety measures.

The IMF now predicts a "cumulative output loss" of $22 trillion -- the equivalent of the entire US economy -- over 2020-25.

Nevertheless, optimism that vaccines will bring the pandemic under control and allow economic activity to resume, coupled with stimulus in major economies, boosted the IMF's growth forecast this year to 5.5 per cent. - AFP

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